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January 7, 2011 | 10 Comments

Grand MetroLink Station Project Update

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Remember how we told you, back in March, that the Grand MetroLink Station is about to see some major improvements when the City of St. Louis takes down the Grand Avenue bridge? That project is getting very close to starting now – the City believes construction (or rather, demolition) will begin in February or March of this year. (Remember, our project start is tied to the City’s project.)

In the meantime, Metro has been updating the design and plans in response to policy decisions and input from our public and private partners. One major change that riders should be happy about: Metro has decided to leave the station open for the duration of the project. How will we accomplish that and still keep you, our customer, safe from the overhead construction?

Extending the platform, of course!

Metro will construct a temporary extension (east) of the MetroLink platform at Grand. The portion of the platform that is in the danger zone – where the elevator towers will be demolished as the bridge comes down – will be closed to passengers. Moving waiting passengers out from under the bridge will ensure passenger safety while keeping the station open. Moreover, the contractors will build part of the new park-ride lot first, so that buses coming to the station will be able to use the newly paved area as a drop-off area and turnaround when Scott Avenue is closed to traffic for the bridge demolition. Once the project is complete and buses are running on Scott Avenue as normal, the parking lot will be opened to the public for its intended use.

The plaza design remains essentially unchanged, except that restrooms are no longer included in the design. We investigated, convened committees, received pricing estimates on all kinds of options – everything from the standard-issue toilet to an automated, hi-tech self-contained unit, but as a matter of policy it was decided that the toilets will just be too expensive to maintain  and operate.

Expect progress updates here once the project gets underway.

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Categories:
Capital Projects, Transit Benefits

10 thoughts on “Grand MetroLink Station Project Update”

  1. Justin says:

    Yay!

    I can’t wait for the Grand Station to start almost as much as I can’t wait for the new Grand Station to be here already!

    Thanks for the update Jennifer.

  2. R says:

    Good to see this process start. The sooner the better. The Grand station (and the process of getting to and from it from the derelict and unsafe bridge) is an embarrassment to our city, especially for out of state college students that use the station to get to and from events in Grand Center. Unfortunately navigating around the trash on the platform stairs and avoiding encounters with obnoxious patrons are a regular part of our trips.

  3. Jimmy Z says:

    Why not just make a longer platform and leave it in place? While it’s admittedly a remote possibility, the biggest limiting factor to longer, 3- and 4-car trains are the current platforms.

  4. Patrick Richmond says:

    I know that this will mean new elevators, and if that is true, this time lets go with OTIS!!!! Either Otis or Kone. The elevators at the Brentwood Metro parking garage are Kone. The Otis Gen2 and the Kone at the parking garage at the Brentwood/I-64 station talks to you.

  5. Jennifer says:

    Patrick – not sure we need a talking elevator but I do know they will be different than the Phase 1 elevators, as we mentioned in the original post about this project.

    Jimmy – regarding the 4-car platforms, that was an option discussed within the agency. My understanding is that building a permanent extension to the platform would have taken a lot longer (design/engineering and procurement process), whereas building the temporary extension is allowing us to get it done before the City’s project starts. Remember, keeping the station open is a fairly recent change to our project and we don’t want to hold up what is really the Main Event – the bridge demo & rebuild. A permanent addition would also cost a lot more and is harder to justify, seeing as how it wouldn’t serve a useful purpose until all the stations were upgraded. Finally, the expected life span on these platforms is such that by the time we get around to 3- or 4-car platforms at all stations, this one’s useful life would be mostly used up, having done nothing but just sat out in the elements. So the engineers opted to save money and work quickly by doing a temporary platform extension.

  6. Sarah says:

    Great to hear that the station will not close but how will we get from the new platform to the street? I usually walk to and from the station to my work place south on Grand.

    1. Courtney says:

      Hi Sarah, people will be able to access Scott Avenue that runs parallel to the station, but I’m not sure yet how the City of St. Louis will coordinate to create pedestrian access from either side of Grand. We will let you know as soon as we find out.

  7. Patrick Richmond says:

    Yes, I did suggest Otis because they build the best quality elevators. They have been building high quality elevators ever since they first went into busineess over a hundred years ago. Otis has special holes in the door track the help with dirt and debris, plus easier dranage during wet weather. There is even an Otis office in Brentwood just west of the Maplewood-Manchester Road station.

  8. Andrew says:

    This is good news! I can’t wait for a new station and new bridge to be constructed. How will the 70 Grand bus access the temporary platform? Will this add time to the 70 Grand schedule?

    I am disappointed to hear about the lack of a restroom facility. As this station is so far from any other restroom, it seems likely we will have people continute to urinate at the station. Ewww. 🙁

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